Tag Archives: emotionally healthy

Are You A Narcissist Magnet?

Does it seem like not only are narcissists everywhere, but they all find you & want to be your friend or romantic interest?

I’ve felt that way myself.  I’ve had so many failed friendships with people I later realized were narcissists.  I probably would’ve had more failed romantic relationships with narcissists as well if I wasn’t so particular about who I dated before I got married.  So many times in my life, I’ve felt like a narcissist magnet- if there’s one within ten miles of me, they will find me quicker than a bloodhound on the trail of a rabbit..

And, it’s not just me.   Many other people I’ve talked to share this experience.  This made me wonder why do some of us keep ending up with such dysfunctional, abusive people in our lives?  I came up with a theory…

Like me, the other folks I’ve talked to who have had many narcissistic relationships also were raised by at least one narcissistic parent.  This means they learned very early in life to behave in a certain way- to work hard to please others, not to ask much (anything, really) from others in a relationship, to tolerate abuse, to offer much praise & no criticism.  These behaviors are extremely pleasing to narcissists, so upon meeting people who behave that way, narcissists are instantly attracted.  They then begin their own version of “love bombing.”   Love bombing is when a narcissist inundates their prospective “love interest” (more like victim..) with loving gestures- romance, gifts, words of love & praise, wanting to take care of the love interest financially or rescue from a bad situation.  Narcissistic friends do this minus the romantic aspect.  They  listen to you, pretend to share things in common with you, & more to draw you into a relationship with them.  Once you’re in though, the mask comes off & the true person is revealed.

So how do you avoid attracting narcissistic friends & romantic interests?  Get mentally healthy!

The more mentally healthy you are, the less able narcissists are to use & abuse you, which is an incredible turn off for them.  While many narcissists enjoy the challenge of destroying someone who is strong, empathetic, & intelligent, they do like someone who can be molded into whatever they want.  An mentally healthy person won’t let that happen.  She knows her boundaries, & enforces them strictly.  She also recognizes dysfunctional & abusive behavior quickly, & won’t tolerate it.  Being mentally healthy is more valuable than having a high IQ when it comes to deterring abusive people from wanting to be in a relationship with you.

I’ve seen this come to pass in my own life.  The more mentally healthy I’ve become, the less interested in me narcissists are.  I seldom find any interested in talking to me for more than a short time, let alone pursuing a friendship.  Plus, I usually can spot them a mile away now, so when I realize the person I just met is a narcissist, I’ll have fun with them.  I’ll change the subject off of them, their interests, etc. onto  something else.  Preferably me, since narcissists have no interest in talking about anyone other than themselves.. heehee!

Something else has come from being healthier too- not only do I attract less narcissists, but I attract more mentally healthy people!  I honestly can say right now that I do not have ONE abusive &/or narcissistic friend in my life.  My friends are caring, compassionate, intelligent & generous.  If we have a disagreement, we can work things out, even if we never come to agree.  We know it’s OK to agree to disagree.  We don’t always share many similar interests, but we do respect each other’s right to be interested in what the other is interested in without judgment.  We often think very much alike & share similar religious beliefs.

I’m not saying attracting narcissists in your life is your fault, or that you have to be completely mentally healthy & over the narcissistic abuse to have good friendships.  Not by any means!   Please don’t think that is what I mean at all!  It’s still completely on the narcissist that they seek out victims.  And, once you start recognizing & failing to tolerate abuse, things will change naturally.  Abusers will start seeing you as an unavailable target & seek another victim.

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Mental Health, Narcissism

Safe vs. Unsafe People

Good day, Dear Readers!

Over the last few years, I have reached the end of my tolerance for dealing with abusive, selfish, manipulative or narcissistic people. Having dealt with a couple of people like this recently, I thought I’d share some ways to recognize safe people vs. unsafe people.  So many people who have survived some type of abuse often attract unsafe people, & have trouble recognizing safe people.  I was that way too, but have learned the difference.  I hope this post will help you to learn the difference!

Safe people respect your time- they don’t assume you are going to wait for them to call or show up at a certain place. Unsafe people, however, have no respect for your time or life.

Safe people ask, rather than make demands. Unsafe people are entitled, believing they deserve whatever they want or need, even at the expense of others.

Safe people do not jump to conclusions. For example, if you don’t answer the phone, they don’t call you back 15 times in a row. Safe people assume you are unavailable, & either wait for you to call them back or they call you back several hours later or the next day. Unsafe people call you back repeatedly, assume you didn’t answer the phone because you are mad at them, or try to make you feel guilty or get mad at you for not answering their call. That is a control tactic- forcing you to deal with them on their terms.

Safe people aren’t judgmental & critical. They don’t say things like, “well if I were you, I would-” or judge or criticize you for decisions you make, things you like, etc. Those are invalidating behaviors are cruel!

Safe people help & support you, rather than mock you or tell you how your problem affects them. This is a huge pet peeve of mine, as I have experienced this many times. The day my dog, Danya, died suddenly & unexpectedly, while my husband & I were trying to gather his body (he was over 100lbs- not easy to move him!) to take him to the vet’s for cremation, my mother called. I told her what happened & what we were doing. She went on & on about how upset she was over his death, not asking once how my husband, I or our pets were doing.

Safe people don’t expect you to be their “trash can.” What I mean is when a person dumps all of their problems on you, & expects you to listen to whatever they want to talk about while ignoring anything you have to say. That is being a trash can. Unsafe people do this trash can thing all of the time.

I hope this helps you to recognize the safe, good people in your life. Remember, you deserve to be surrounded by safe, loving, compassionate, empathetic people. You do NOT deserve to be abused & mistreated!

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Mental Health, Narcissism

What Is The Difference Between Guilt & Shame?

Many people who have survived abuse, especially childhood abuse, don’t realize there is a vast difference between healthy, normal guilt & toxic shame.  We are taught from day one to feel shame- ashamed of who we are, what we think/feel/do/like/don’t like & more.  This is absolutely deadly to one’s self-esteem.  When you are ashamed of who you are, you want to hide from the world- you don’t want to expose anyone to the terrible person you believe you are.  You would love to be invisible.

Guilt, however, is a very useful, healthy tool in life.  Guilt doesn’t make you feel ashamed of yourself- guilt makes you feel ashamed of something you did that was wrong instead.  Guilt speaks of the action, while shame speaks of who you are.  For example, if you come home after a very trying day, & snap at your husband, you should feel guilt.  Enough guilt for acting that way to make you say, “I’m sorry, Baby.. I’ve had an awful day.  It’s not fair of me to take it out on you though.”  Once your apology is accepted, you let it go.

Shame however, would make you tell yourself that you are a terrible person.  You shouldn’t have acted that way- only a bad person acts like that!  You may or may not apologize- shame may make you feel too embarrassed to apologize- but you will beat yourself up for being such a bad person.

Do you see the difference?  Guilt says, “I did something wrong,” where shame says, “I am wrong & bad.”

Do you have a healthy sense of guilt, or do you feel shame?  If you are in doubt, ask yourself how you feel after doing something that hurts another person’s feelings.  (And yes, you will- we ALL do hurtful things sometimes, no matter how careful we are to avoid it).  If you quickly do what you can to make amends & let it go, then you are feeling healthy guilt.  If you beat yourself up for being a terrible person, you feel shame.

It can be hard to overcome shame, especially after a lifetime of experience with it, but it can be done.  As you work on your healing, your self-esteem naturally improves.  You also see things in a much healthier perspective- you begin to realize that you are NOT at fault for everything, as you heard you were when you were a child.  You realize that things were done to you that you didn’t deserve, & nothing you could have done would have made you deserve to be abused.  These things help you to feel less & less shame as time passes.  

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Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism